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Daily Current Affairs 18th September 2023 Daily GK Update
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Rajnath Singh approved 23 new Sainik Schools in partnership mode
- Defence minister Rajnath Singh has approved the setting up of 23 New Sainik Schools in partnership mode, thereby increasing the tally of such schools functioning under the aegis of Sainik School Society to 42.
- Apart from the existing 33 Sainik Schools already functioning under the erstwhile pattern.
- The objective of eventually setting up 100 new Sainik Schools in partnership mode is to provide quality education to the students in tune with the National Education Policy (NEP) and give them better career opportunities, including joining the armed forces.
- The objectives of this initiative envisioned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi include providing quality education in line with the National Education Policy and enhancing career opportunities for students, including the option to join the armed forces.
- It also promotes collaboration between the private sector and the government for nation-building and the development of responsible citizens.
Government received Rs 1487 crore from NTPC as dividend tranche
- The central government has received about Rs 1,487 crore from NTPC as a dividend tranche.
- This follows NTPC’s recent announcement regarding the payment of its Final Dividend for the financial year 2022-23.
- A dividend is a reward companies often provide to their shareholders, though not mandatorily, from a portion of their earnings.
- NTPC, a state-owned company, is India’s largest power utility firm with an installed capacity of 73,824 MW (including Joint Ventures) and plans to become a 130 GW company by 2032.
- Earlier, the government has respectively received about Rs 2,182 crore and Rs 460 crore from Indian Oil Corporation Ltd and Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd as dividends tranches.
- The government also received 1701 crore from Power grid Corporation of India Limited as a dividend.
Tata Steel signs 500 million pound-deal with UK govt
- The United Kingdom has signed a joint investment package with Tata Steel worth £1.25 billion (about $1.55 billion), including a government grant of £500 million ($621 million,) to secure the future of Port Talbot operations in Wales — the country’s largest steelworks.
- The joint investment package is the largest in the UK steel industry in decades would pave the way for greener steelmaking at the Welsh unit, by replacing coal-powered blast furnaces nearing the end of their effective life with a state-of-art 3 million tonne electric arc furnace (EAF).
- The move is aimed at reducing the UK’s entire carbon emissions by around 1.5 percent.
- The £500 million grant — one of the largest support packages from the UK government — is subject to relevant regulatory approvals and consultation processes. Tata Steel’s share, about £700 million, would be funded largely through internal equity.
About United Kingdom (UK)
- Capital – London
- Currency – Pound sterling
- Prime Minister – Rishi Sunak
Ashok Leyland signs MoU with UP Govt to set up integrated e-bus plant
- Ashok Leyland has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the government of Uttar Pradesh to set up an integrated commercial vehicle bus plant focused on green mobility in Uttar Pradesh.
- Under this partnership, Ashok Leyland, the Indian flagship of the Hinduja Group, will focus on producing electric buses, assembling other vehicles powered by available fuels, and emerging alternative fuels.
- The Government of Uttar Pradesh is eager to attract private-sector investments aligned with our net zero mission.
- The company plans to invest up to Rs 1,000 crore in this new facility over the next few years.
- Ashok Leyland’s mission to achieve net zero by year 2048 is one of the triggers to set up this plant in Uttar Pradesh. Uttar Pradesh is not only one of the largest and the most dynamic states in our country, but also very firm in its commitment towards environment and sustainability.
- MD & CEO of Ashok Leyland – Shenu Agarwal
Recent MoUs signed by State Government
- Odisha Govt signs MoU with six public sector banks to provide banking
- Maharashtra signs MoU with Germany’s professional association football
- The Jharkhand govt signed MoU with TCPL Green Energy Solutions Private Ltd. to set up the country’s “first” hydrogen fuel project in Jamshedpur.
- ISB signed MoU with Goa government for knowledge partnership
- Karnataka govt, Foxconn sign Letter of Intent with Rs 5000 cr investment
India ranks first among 154 nations in grassroots crypto adoption
- India has been ranked first in grassroots crypto adoption, even amid a tough regulatory environment, according to Chainalysis’ 2023 Global Crypto Adoption Index.
- The country ranked first in four parameters including centralized service value received, retail centralized service value received, DeFi value received and Retail DeFi value received. Last year India stood fourth.
- Nigeria ranked second in the index, followed by Vietnam, United States and Ukraine.
- The report also said that low-income countries saw a dramatic uptick in crypto adoption following a slump in late 2022, spurred by the collapse of the FTX.
- The report combines on-chain data and real-world data to measure which countries are leading the world in grassroots crypto adoption.
- Grassroots crypto adoption isn’t about which countries have the highest raw transaction volumes, Instead, it’s the countries where average, everyday people are embracing crypto the most, the report explains.
- The government has introduced stringent taxation rules, including a 30% tax on gains and a 1% TDS (Tax Deducted at Source) on crypto trades.
- US News & World Report’s annual Best Countries – Switzerland (Rank 1), Canada (Rank 2), Sweden (Rank 3)
- Henley Passport Index 2023– India ranked 80th; topped by Singapore
- World’s most powerful military – Strongest (1. USA, 2 Russia, 3. China, 4. India, 5. UK); Weakest (1. Bhutan, 2. Benin, 3. Moldova, 4. Somalia, 5. Liberia)
- Global Peace Index 2022 – India at 126, topped by Iceland; last Afghanistan
- Global Competitiveness Index 2023 – India ranked 40; topped by Denmark
Banking and Financial
Max Life Insurance entered health, wellness segment with new plan SEWA
- Max Life Insurance, a private life insurer, has ventured into the health and wellness segment with the launch of a new plan ‘SEWA’.
- The Secure Earnings & Wellness Advantage (SEWA) plan covers hospitalization, ICU stay, surgeries, critical illness, and disability, besides life cover.
- To drive insurance adoption among women and transgender customers, as part of financial inclusion, it offers them a 5 percent discount in the first-year premium.
- SEWA is a unique product that combines the benefit of health, security and financial stability. A product of innovation based on deep consumer insights; SEWA is a testament to Max Life’s dedication to contribute towards a healthier, financially secure India.
Recent Facilities Launched in Banking & Insurance Sector
- Bharti AXA Life introduces “Life Income Laabh” to simplify insurance
- DBS Bank unveils metaverse adventure on ‘DBS BetterWorld’
- HSBC India became the first foreign bank in India to launch ‘ONDC in a Box’
- AU Small Finance launches Zenith Metal credit card
- SBI Card adds new features to AURUM super premium credit card
- SBI Card launched new credit card Simply SAVE Merchant SBI Card for MSMEs to cater short-term credit needs
Appointment and Resignation
Former SBI Chief Rajnish Kumar appointed Chairman of Mastercard India
- Leading credit card company Mastercard has appointed Rajnish Kumar, former Chairman of the State Bank of India (SBI), as the Chairman of Mastercard India.
- Kumar brings nearly 4 decades of experience in India’s largest bank to his new role at Mastercard.
- Mastercard aims to expand its domestic footprint and forge strategic partnerships across the payments ecosystem.
- The US-based card company has faced a regulatory curb by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), which barred Mastercard in 2021 from issuing debit and credit cards to new domestic customers over compliance issues regarding storage of payment system data. The ban was lifted in June 2022.
- Mastercard has said that India is a key growth market and has invested $2 billion in the country since 2014 to build technology centres and support innovation in digital payments.
- Founded -16 December 1966
- Headquarters– New York, United States
- CEO– Michael Miebach
Recent Appointment in Banking & Insurance Sector
- Statutory auditor of Paytm – S.R. Batliboi
- MD & CEO of ICICI Bank – Sandeep Bakshi (reappointment for 3 year)
- Managing Director of SBI – Vinay M. Tonse (recommended)
- Interim MD & CEO of Kotak Mahindra Bank – Dipak Gupta (replace Uday Kotak)
- Chairman of Finance Industry Development Council (FIDC) – Umesh Revankar
Hrithik Roshan appointed brand ambassador of lubricants brand Mobilil
- With a 150-year legacy of developing and applying next-generation technologies to meet the world’s growing energy needs, Exxon Mobil has signed actor Hrithik Roshan as the new brand ambassador for its lubrication brand Mobilil.
- Mobil offers a range of expertly formulated industrial lubricants to cater to diverse market needs.
- Mobil products are engineered to help consumers get outstanding engine performance and protection for their cars, trucks, and motorcycles.
Recent Brand Ambassador
- Anushka Sharma – Women’s fashion brand ‘W’
- Mahendra Singh Dhoni – Swaraj Tractors
- Chef Sanjeev Kapoor – Indian Oil ‘s XTRATEJ LPG brand
- Iga Swiatek – Infosys’s Global Brand Ambassador
- Rafael Nadal – Infosys brand and Infosys Digital Innovation
- Rahul Dravid – Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL)
Rahul Mishra honored with France’s “Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres” award
- Famous Indian fashion designer Rahul Mishra has been awarded the prestigious “Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres” (Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters) by France Government.
- This prestigious award was given to Rahul Mishra for his outstanding achievements in the field of art and design, especially his dedication to promoting Indian craftsmanship and expertise on a global scale.
- The award serves as a tribute to his significant contribution to promoting cultural relations and cooperation between France and India.
- The presentation of the award took place on September 12, 2023, at the French residence in New Delhi with Emmanuel Lenain, Ambassador of France to India, conducting the ceremony.
- Safety Innovation Award 2023′ in the ‘Construction’ category – RITES Limited
- Green Railway Certification by the Indian Green Building Council (IGBC) – Vijayawada Railway Station (Platinum rating)
- The Lifetime Achievement Award in Academia – VC of Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) Najma Akhtar
- Dr AM Gokhale Award – Ophthalmologist Dr Sanjay Kumar Mishra
- Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award for 2022 – 12 scientists selected
Team including Indian researcher wins 2023 Ig Nobel prize
- A team of scientists from India, China, Malaysia, and the US has won this year’s Ig Nobels, the prize for humorous scientific feats, in the mechanical engineering category for its study of repurposing dead spiders to be used in gripping tools.
- Researchers Te Faye Yap, Zhen Liu, Anoop Rajappan, Trevor Shimokusu, and Daniel Preston, from Rice University in the US, won the prize for their research on re-animating dead spiders to use as mechanical gripping tools.
- Counting nose hairs in cadavers, repurposing dead spiders, smart toilets idea, and explaining why scientists lick rocks, were among the 10 winning achievements in the 33rd Ig Nobel Prize ceremony.
- The Nobel Prize is the premier award in science, reserved for those that “have conferred the greatest benefit to humankind.”
- Leading Fintech Personality of the Year Award by Gulf Cooperation Countries (GCC) – Adeeb Ahamed
- M S Swaminathan Award – P V Satyanaryana
- National Diabetologist of the Year Award – Dr Navneet Agrawal
- Top central banker globally by US-based Global Finance magazine – Shaktikanta Das (rated A+)
- Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year 2023 – Manoj Bubna
84 artists conferred with Sangeet Natak Akademi Amrit awards
- Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar has conferred the Sangeet Natak Akademi Amrit Awards to 84 performing artists in New Delhi.
- A total of 84 artists, including 70 men and 14 women, received the award at the ceremony.
- The special achievement awards were given to artists above the age of 75 from all over India who have not been bestowed any national honour yet.
- The honour carries purse money of one lakh rupees along with Tamrapatra and Angavastra.
- Sangeet Natak Akademi Amrit Awards is a national honour bestowed on performing artists as well as teachers and scholars in the field of performing arts.
- The list of awardees includes Krishen Langoo (theatre and music) from Jammu and Kashmir, John Claro Fernandes (playwriting) from Goa, Mahabir Nayak (folk music and dance) from Jharkhand and Tsering Stanzin (folk music) from Ladakh.
- Three artistes from Andhra Pradesh, two from Arunachal Pradesh and six from Maharashtra also received the prestigious award. Three from Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat and two each from Punjab and Delhi were also selected.
- Four award recipients each are from Bihar, Odisha, West Bengal, Manipur, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka while five each from Assam and Rajasthan also received the prize.
IIT Guwahati researchers develop pharmaceutical and food products
- Researchers from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Guwahati have developed pharmaceutical and food products from tea factory waste.
- As per a recent study, tea is one of the most widely consumed beverages worldwide with world tea consumption reaching 6.3 million tonnes and is expected to rise to 7.4 million tonnes by 2025.
- This huge increase in tea consumption leads to an increase in industrial tea waste generation which leads to the non-utilisation of valuable agricultural resources and deterioration of environment.
- The findings of these studies have also been published in various international journals including the International Journal of Biological Macromolecules, Chemosphere, Critical Reviews in Biotechnology, etc.
India won Asia Cup for record-extending 8th time
- India won the Asia Cup 2023 after beating Sri Lanka in the final by 10 wickets.
- This victory marked India’s first Asia Cup win since 2018.
- India reached their target in just 6.1 overs, winning the final with 263 balls to spare and all 10 wickets intact.
- This was India’s biggest winning margin in terms of balls remaining. The previous best was against Kenya in 2001, where they chased down a target of 91 with 231 balls to spare.
- Kuldeep Yadav clinches 9 wickets in the tournament and wins the Player of the Tournament award.
- The ground staff who ensured successful completion of the matches were presented with an award of $50000.
- Mohammed Siraj earned the Player of the Match award.
- Ravindra Jadeja was awarded the Catch of the Match award
All About Asia Cup 2023
- Edition – 16th
- Champions – India
- Runners-up – Sri Lanka
- Host country – Sri Lanka
- Final Match – R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
- Next edition (2024) – Qatar
- Player of the series – Kuldeep Yadav (India)
- Most runs – Shubman Gill (India) – 302 Runs.
- Most wickets -Matheesha Pathirana (Sri Lanka) – 11 Wickets.
- Sri Lanka captain – Dasun Shanaka.
- India Captain – Rohit Sharma
- India is the most successful team with Eight titles.
- Sri Lanka is the second most successful team, with six titles
- 2023 Asia Cup shifted from Pakistan to the Sri Lanka.
- Asia Cup was established in 1983 when the Asian Cricket Council was founded.
- Six Cricket teams participate in Asia Cup i.e. Hong Kong, Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
- Headquarters of Asian Cricket Council (ACC) is at Colombo, Sri Lanka.
18 September – World Bamboo Day
- World Bamboo Day is observed annually on September 18.
- Objective – To raise awareness about the myriad benefits of bamboo and its role in addressing pressing global challenges.
- World Bamboo Day was established courtesy the efforts of the World Bamboo Organization, a non-profit organization that was founded in 2005 by Susanne Lucas and David Knights to promote bamboo as a valuable and versatile resource.
- In 2009, the WBO organized the first World Bamboo Congress in Bangkok, Thailand which brought together bamboo enthusiasts, experts, researchers, and industry professionals from around the world and proposed the idea of creating a dedicated day to celebrate bamboo.
- Bamboo is a type of grass that grows rapidly and is known for its strength.
18 September – International Equal Pay Day 2023
- International Equal Pay Day is observed every year on 18 September.
- This day underscores the commitment of the United Nations to uphold human rights and combat all forms of discrimination, particularly discrimination against women and girls.
- International Equal Pay Day traces its origins back to 1996 when it was first observed by the National Committee on Pay Equity.
- This committee comprised women’s and civil rights organizations dedicated to eradicating wage discrimination based on gender and race. Their ultimate goal was to achieve pay equity for all.
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